Wednesday, 12 May 2010

War hero's weapons found in house clearance in Surrey

A rather interesting story from BBC News. I would have expected a find like this to have been destroyed - nice to see some research done and the weapons find their natural home in a museum.

Six firearms which once belonged to World War II hero Geoffrey Hallowes have been handed over to a museum after being found at a house in Surrey.

The guns were discovered in March 2008 by a woman who was clearing out the property in Walton-on-Thames and handed them over to police.

Firearms specialists established their link with Mr Hallowes, who served with the Special Operations Executive (SOE).

They have now been given to the Gordon Highlanders Museum in Aberdeen.

Mr Hallowes served with the Gordon Highlanders in the Far East before joining the SOE in Europe in the second half of the WWII.

He helped to organise the French Resistance after D-Day and received a number of gallantry awards, including the Croix de Guerre and Legion d'honneur.

In the 1950s, after his return to Britain, he married the wartime SOE heroine and George Cross holder, Odette Sansom, the subject of a 1950 film starring Anna Neagle.

Odette died in 1995 and Mr Hallowes in 2006.

  • American M1 carbine
  • German MP40 sub machine gun
  • Othaca .45 pistol (copy of an American Colt M1911.45)
  • British Enfield .38 revolver
  • American Colt .32 pistol
  • German Luger 9mm pistol
  • Following the firearms find, Surrey Police passed the details to the Imperial War Museum which was able to suggest the identity of the former owner.

    The Gordon Highlanders Museum confirmed their historical context.

    The firearms are to be displayed alongside Mr Hallowes' war medals.

    "The acquisition of these firearms is the most important addition to the museum's armoury since it opened in 2007 and will become the most important items in the firearms collection as a whole," said curator Jesper Ericsson.

    "This is because not only can we connect these firearms with an individual, but an individual with an extraordinary history."

    Roger Weedon, firearms licensing manager at Surrey Police, said: "We were delighted to be able to identify the context of the use of these firearms and were able to arrange for their lawful transfer to a museum."

    1 comment:

    1. It is so dangerous to found the weapon from the house during the house clearance...House clearance wakefield